How to Make Friends at Work, When You Are a Newbie
If you are new to your company, in addition to understanding your role, responsibilities, and company culture, you also need to make an effort to get to know your colleagues and make friends. Since you spend most of your waking hours at work, it makes sense to form a healthy bond with your colleagues from the start.
(Photo Credit: Al Abut/Flickr)
Need help making the first move? Here are a few tips:
1. Work on your body language.
To be perceived as friendly, your body language needs to be in sync with your goal. Smile politely and make good eye contact. Don’t stare. These suggested tips to ace an interview could very well be used in social life too. Stay professional in your interactions.
2. Join social committees.
If your organization has birthday committees or new hire welcome committees, it helps to join these groups at least initially to get to know people around you and connect in informal settings. If there are groups geared toward your interests, make an attempt to join them. If there aren’t any such committees or groups, maybe you could start one! It could help future newbies like yourself and create a community even for old employees. Check to see if there are restrictions, however. Some organizations do not support group emails, for example.
3. Have lunch/coffee meetings.
You could suggest having a “meet and greet” appointment over lunch or coffee. Most people honor the meeting, unless really crunched for time.
4. Food your way.
Everyone wants to stop at the cubicle filled with candies or freshly baked cookies. While the food itself is a conversation starter, your office could be a pit stop for a mini get-together.
5. Seek advice.
Even if you have been in your role at other companies for a long time and know everything there ever is to know about your job, each company approaches a job differently. Talk to people, show the eagerness to learn, and seek advice. Show some humility. Understand how things are done in your new place of work.
6. Don’t refer to your old organization.
At least, not too much. It is off-putting. You are in this office now, so stop making comparisons with your old place of work. You did, after all, choose this place over your last one!
7. Follow through.
If you’ve made a commitment to help a colleague with something like getting the contact details of the salon that’s just great for kids haircuts or helping with a resource for home repair, follow through your commitment. It’s the small things that make a big difference.
8. Help out!
Even if it doesn’t directly affect your work, if you are good at something, and you see a colleague who has expressed the need for some help, volunteer your support, without expecting anything in return. A good deed is always welcome and appreciated.
Tell Us What You Think
How was your experience making friends at work? We want to hear from you! Leave a comment or join the discussion on Twitter.